Ever played a game of Call of Duty or Halo and wondered what it feels like to be hit by airstrike? Well the people of the northwestern city of Idlib don’t need to. On June 12th an airstrike was carried out by unknown warplanes belonging to either Russian or Syrian armed forces. The victims were not only rebel soldiers but also a neighboring market; of the 20 deceased, 5 children were killed. The death toll is believed to increase due to the number of people severely injured by the airstrike.
Russia had deployed their warplanes the previous year to help the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad exterminate the rebel forces seeking to end his rule. Russia has also used their warplanes to aid the Syrian President fight ISIS in the east. Idlib is a major stronghold for the rebel forces and their troops, which was one of the reasons why it was targeted. There has been a large amount of bombings in the Idlib province, which has caused the death of 23 civilians in the last month itself.
Another airstrike took place in the town of Maarat al-Numan, which is located 30 kilometers south of Idlib where another 6 were killed. Ibrahim Abu Laith told Anadolu Agency that aircraft dropped thermobaric and barrel bombs on opposition-held neighborhoods. "At least 18 civilians were killed and 50 others injured, including children and women," he said. Thermobaric bombs are far more destructive than conventional explosives due to their extremely powerful blast while barrel bombs are improvised devices that have been used to devastating effect in Syria, where they are typically dropped by helicopter on residential districts.
One of Syria’s largest cities Aleppo has recently been cut off from the rest of the world. The city has been divided between the rebel forces and President Bashad’s forces for nearly the entire duration of the war. The cities roads have been closed by several air and artillery strikes
which have left hundreds of thousands of people under siege. It has been confirmed that around 350,000 people are living in the rebel territory of Aleppo under harsh conditions, which were made worse by the latest attempt to besiege them by cutting of the last existing way out known as Castello Road.
Senior official of the Aleppo rebel group Zakaria Malahifji said “The regime was not able to cut the road by land so it has decided to keep the planes in the sky continuously, hitting everything that passes, regardless of what it is. Whoever wants to go on the Castello road is undertaking a suicide mission.”
If the response of the world to terrorists is merely using weapons to cause more terror regardless of whom it hits, then what truly separates us from them. People claim that they fight for their own justice and yet thousands of people die every year in the crossfire of this battle between right and wrong. How is it that the answer thought up by some of the greatest military forces is so close to the problem itself. It was Mahatma Gandhi who said ‘An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.’ Well the world clearly doesn’t see the problem so when are they going to open their eyes? Syria has been at war since 2011 and since then over 470,000 people have died and the death toll keeps rising; it’s about time that the methods employed are changed.